# 53 LIQUID LANDSCAPES
Water shortage in Megacities The Dutch approach Water Senstive Urban Design Artificial Land
Floating houses, more than pleasant living Learning from Plecnik Water ways Miami Beach soundscape A home away from home Claim the smart city! ViaVIA is published by the study-association VIA Urbanism, at Eindhoven University of Technology
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EDITORIAL Dear reader, This is the first new edition of the viaVIA during the educational year 2016-2017. Looking back on last year, many things have changed. In 2015, I started as the commissioner of Public Relations and editor-in-chief of the viaVIA in the new board of VIA Stedebouw. I experienced a lot during this year, organized different activities and participated in even more. I got to know many new people and also learned a little bit more about myself. But now my year on the board of VIA has already ended, with at the end the study trip during the summer break. We visited Edinburgh, Glasgow and London in ten days. Besides seeing a lot of beautiful architecture and urban landscapes (almost too much), we also experienced some really Scottish and English habits; such as drinking Whiskey and eating deep fried Mars bars. Believe me, those deep fried Mars bars tasted so good! Hopefully, the new board of VIA Urbanism will also enjoy and have fun this year as much as I did. They will make new memories, while the memories of last year are already slowly fading away. The new board will be introduced in this issue and some announcements are already made on the newspage about this year. Luckily, I was able to stretch my year as editor-in-chief of the viaVIA a little longer until November, so I was able to introduce this new edition to you. The theme of this viaVIA is ‘Liquid Landscapes’. The theme is about the way water is currently integrated in the urban landscape. The theme section is composed from rough to small. The first articles will tell something about water problems and water shortages in mega cities. You will read an article about managing the water cycle and artificial land as well. Hereafter, several articles are written about more upcoming water trends; like building on water and bringing water back in the city. The articles in the viaVIA always react to new urban processes, but in this edition a new column is introduced, specially about urban trends. The trend represented in this edition is about urban data, or better known as ‘big data’. Besides that, you can find a column about homes for refugees written by Sophie Rousseau, two articles about a graduation project from urban design & planning, and two interviews; one with Perry Maas from West 8 and one with Ruut van Paridon from van Paridon x de Groot.
Besides that, two activities of VIA will be highlighted in this issue; the study trip to the United Kingdom and the Challenge about Eindhoven in 2066. The last activity already took place in April, but the different results from the challenges have been shown during the Dutch Design Week 2016 in Eindhoven. I hope you will enjoy reading this issue as much as I did when making it. The viaVIA committee really enjoyed the competition about who made the best picture for the cover and the spread during their summer vacation! Unfortunately, this is the third and already last edition that I will publish as the editor-in-chief of this magazine, but I am sure that my successors will do their very best to make a success of VIA and especially the next viaVIAs. Good luck, with this new educational year! Anouk van Otterlo Commissioner Public Relations Editor-in-chief ViaVIA 2015-2016
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CONTENTS CONTENTS Colofon ViaVIA, published by study association VIA Urbanism, Stedebouw,TU/e TU/e
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Urban trends Hacking the city News News
year 22, number 53 52 Eindhoven, November April 2016 2016 ViaVIA is published by: PR-committee VIA Urbanism Stedebouw Den Dolech 2 (Vertigo 07) E-mail: email@example.com www.viastedebouw.nl facebook.com/groups/viastedebouw facebook.com/viaurbanism Editors Anouk van Otterlo (editor-in-chief) Mark van Stefan Dermaux Esdonk Naomivan Mark Huveneers Esdonk Jeroen Kools Naomi Huveneers Catalien Bram Nuijten Peerdeman Nathalie Peerdeman Catalien Snels
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Aron Straver Anna van Rij Nathalie Snels Guest Editors Renée van Guest Editors der Bijl Rob vanBollen Jeroen der Bijl Ad de Bont Rik Bondt Jasper Brus Calliauw Marc Houben Daan Clercx Jard van Koen Dohmen der Lugt HansErdmann Frits Snijders Chris van Joost Steenhuis Gorkom Jan Tatoušek Jimmy Hendrickx Vectorworks Neslihan Imamoğlu
THEME : City Labels Young families in the city
THEME : Liquid Landscapes Never change a winning team
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Lars Kerssens Printing Perry Maas DrukwerkMAX Ruut van Paridon(Zoetermeer) Sophie Rousseau ISSNSteenhuis Chris 1385-7045 Lisa Timmers Picture on cover: Vectorworks Naomi Huveneers Marijke Voermans Joep Worms Theme picture: Nathalie Snels Printing DrukwerkMAX (Zoetermeer) ISSN 1385-7045 Picture on cover: Naomi Huveneers Theme picture: Nathalie Snels
The 24th board of VIA Urbanism Improve your hand drawing skills Workshop of VIA: Hélène Aarts Studytrip of VIA How much do we know about our neighbours? United Kingdom Activity of VIA: Excursion to Leuven CORTEX HAMONIC + MASSON & Associés the Case smart study: Vectorworks Claim city! The bicycle the transport system of tomorColumn:as Joost van urban Gorkom, Buro Lubbers Greetings from Istanbul row Column: Ad de Bont Column: Neslihan Imamoğlu The urban artifact of the port VIA abroad Master project: Jard van der Lugt Column: Koen Dohmen Contest
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Article: Jeroen Kools Water shortage in Megacities Sustainable living Sweden Article: Mark van Esdonk Article: Nathalie Snels The Dutch approach CO2 reducing transport of tomorrow
An interview withPeerdeman Ruut van Paridon Article: Catalien Water Sensitive Urban Design Subterranean space design Article: Nathalie Snels Article: Mark van Esdonk Artificial land Hub Forward Article: Naomi Huveneers Interview with KruitKok Landschapsarchitecten Floating houses, more than pleasant living Nature does not plan Article: Catalien Peerdeman Learning Article: Dr.ir. Rob van der Bijl & Renée van der Bijl MSc. from Plečnik Article: Bram Nuijten Water ways Re-use of the former Graduation project: FritsNBDS Erdmann railway
Graduation project: Marc Houben Space MiamiOddity Beach soundscape An interview with Perry Maas from West 8 Column: Hans Snijders A home away from home Column: Sophie Rousseau
URBAN TRENDS: HACKING THE CITY Today, we are all living in a digital world. This new world grew exponentially since the 1990s and because of this enormous growth during the second half of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century, this period is already called the information age. But, to think about a world without technology is almost unimaginable nowadays. We all have our mobile phones, computers and countless other electronic devices which we use on daily basis. Since a few years, it is possible to measure this behaviour, through all these electronic devices and networks around us. What do we measure? We measure and produce an enormous amount of ‘raw’ data. This means much unorganised, proliferated facts are stored. This bulk of information we are collecting, is called “Big data”. This data is filtered and made accessible to become information that we can use. This is done in all kinds of different industries, but also in our expertise; urbanism. The information assembled about cities and their inhabitants is called urban data. Through analyzing urban data, new trends and patterns can be found. With these found trends and patterns we can make better design decisions on how to improve our cities and invent better solutions. These trends and patterns cannot be found through just one single source, but by combining these urban data, new discoveries can be made. So, why is collecting information about a city so popular? Because with this information a city can become a smart city. According
to the Smart Cities Council Readiness Guide “a smart city applies information and communication technology (ICT) to solve problems. A smart city collects data, communicates data and analyses data about this particular city.” So would it be a good mean to prevent and solve issues in a city and to improve a city according to the information the inhabitants produce? Or is there also a downside to this idea? Sociologist Saskia Sassen thinks a little bit different about this; “the widespread model of what is called “intelligent or smart cities” leads to a closed technological system that has the potential to turn cities into cemeteries of obsolete machines. Open-source urbanism could allow people to interact with—and therefore propose—constant changes in their city’s structure.” Would it be better to let people give their own information about how they experience their city instead of collecting all available, but maybe meaningless data and just draw (maybe a wrong) conclusion from it? Should everyone be able to give comments or an opinion through different media, to shape a city they would be happy to live in? Or has the public then to much control to take over their city. In the end it matters what you and how you think about this problem! How would you change and remake your city? In the end, that is what we all came to do when we started studying architecture, building and planning on the TU/e. We want to change our city and make a difference. Anouk van Otterlo
Sources: 1. Urban big data centrum. http:// ubdc.ac.uk/). 2. Smart Cities Council Readiness Guide 3. Saskia Sassen, BMW Guggenheim Lab. https://www.guggenheim.org/blogs/ lablog/tbc-hacking-city Pictures: Left: Chicago skyline reflected, Stephen Finn Right: de Architecken cie.
World – Olympics Brazil As you probably did not miss, the Summer Olympic Games of 2016 took place in Rio de Janeiro from the 5th till the 21st of August. The olympic venues had to accommodate 306 sport events, 100.000 of supporters, 11.000 sportsman, thousands of journalists, and lots of other people involved in the Games. The central district of the Olympics formed the Barra Olympic Park, of which the masterplan was designed by the AECOM engineering firm. The transportation of over 100.000 supporters a day formed a key problem in the project, and is solved by a huge walkway. This has a width of approximately 50 meters, curves all the way through the landscape of the Olympic park, and connects most of the venues. During the games, the park was well used. Now the games are finished, ambitious plans exist which should transform the venues into new schools and sport facilities for the inhabitants of Rio de Janeiro. The question is whether these plans will really work and if the park will be successful in the future too.
Eindhoven – Lichthoven Since a few months, a new high-rise tower in Eindhoven appeared at the horizon, which contains the student hotel and a restaurant. The building is part of the plan named ‘Lichthoven’, which lies at the south side of the station. The masterplan, designed by Sarafopoulos architects and de Architekten Cie. consists of a total of eight buildings providing a floor surface of 95.000 m2 providing apartments, a hotel, a restaurant, cafés, shops, offices, cycle sheds and parking space for cars. The buildings are situated in two lines, with a park in between. The first line consists of offices, which form a barrier for noise coming from trains towards the houses and the hotel, which lie in the second line. The park integrates the river Dommel with the station district. Lichthoven adds a new dimension to the center side of the station district, and the relatively big buildings should form a step upward towards bigger national allure of Eindhoven. However, while the student hotel is almost finished, the rest of the plan still has to be build and the completion date is still unknown.
Netherlands – Utrecht Central Station Bit by bit, the central station in Utrecht opens new parts for public, and gets its final form. As the old station was built for 35 million travelers a year, the new station will be able to handle 100 million passengers yearly. The station will form a transport hub for trains, trams and busses. Benthem Crouwel Architects created the new design of the station, which is recognizable by its huge wavy roof. The undulating structure creates a big incidence of light, which enlarges the effect of the wavy pattern. This pattern not only stands for the movement of transportation, but it also connects the two sides of the station (Stationsplein and Jaarbeursplein). Instead of being physically connected with a shopping center (Hoog Catharijne), which is still the case for now, the station will be a free-standing building. Underneath the two squares beside the station, two big bicycle parking spaces will be build, of which one will form the biggest cycle shed in the world. However big parts of the station are already accessible for public, the official opening will take place the 7th of December this year.
VIA – Lunchlecture Urhahn 22 September, Urhahn urban design and strategy provided the first lunchlecture of the academic year, presented by Stijn Kuipers. The lecture was about a flexible and new way of urban design. In earlier days, before the economic recession took place, areas were usually designed from ‘above’, which means that the urban developer designed a plan as a whole, and that everything was built according to the plan he made. The new way of urban design provides a flexible plan, created from the bottom. This means that at the start, no plan is fixed and many different designs are possible for a certain area. Private parties can come up with ideas, and when the urban developer thinks the idea fits in the profile of the area, the plan can be build. Space S in Eindhoven, Oostenburg in Amsterdam and Spoorzone Tilburg are successful examples of this new way of urbanism on which Urhahn worked. Stefan Dermaux
THE 24th BOARD OF VIA URBANISM Jeroen Bollen – Chairman & Commissioner of Education This academic year I have the honor to be the new Chairman of the 24th board of VIA Urbanism. Last year, after finishing my bachelor and looking for some extracurricular involvement during my master, I was introduced to the VIA community when I joined the committee of activities. As a member of this committee I helped organizing some great activities and I got to know the association better. This enthusiasm for VIA inspired me to increase my involvement within the association, resulting in me becoming the chairman of the new board. Even though this is a big personal challenge, I am looking forward to this year. Next to being a member of the VIA board, I am also a master student , preferably in both Architecture and Urbanism. In my function as Chairman and commissioner of Education, I hope to be able to become a useful link between the students and the teachers whenever necessary. Also, I hope we can keep the positive energy within the urbanism community and have fun in all subjects related to urbanism. Daan Clercx – Secretary & Vice-chairman At the start of previous year, I joined VIA Urbanism as a member of the study trip committee. After a while, I started to participate in various activities as well. This was the moment where I got to know more people from VIA Urbanism. I have come to know VIA as an intimate and active study association which organizes many activities. VIA is also a place where you can make new friends and learn a lot. Joining this year’s board is a great opportunity for me to gain more experience in extracurricular activities. I also wanted to do more than just studying. As the secretary, my responsibility will be the communication towards our fellow members by sending the newsletter. I will also be responsible for most of the administrative work, this includes keeping track of the membership and reading post and emails. I will also make the minutes during every board meeting. I really want to commit myself to VIA Urbanism and all its members. Together we can make this a great year!
Lars Kerssens - Treasurer During my first three years at university, I did not do any extracurricular activities. But during my fourth year, I decided to do something extra because of the extra time I had while finishing my bachelor degree. I decided to join two committees of VIA, the study trip and activities committees. The good experience that it gave me was one of my reasons to join the VIA board. My task within the board is treasurer. My responsibility as the treasurer of VIA is to ensure the financial health of the student association. Therefore it is important to map all the incoming and outgoing cash flows. Before the start of the new academic year, the budget of VIA is made by me. From this budget, expected costs and revenues can be read. The budget also shows what the committees can spend. During the General Members Meeting , I will present the financial overview to inform all VIA members about the financial status. Anna van Rij – Commissioner of Public Relations & Commissioner viaVIA The past three years went by so fast that I wanted to do something different this year. I want to enjoy my time at the university more and explore new challenges. One of these new challenges is becoming this board’s commissioner of Public Relations. I am no stranger with extracurricular activities and therefore it was not such a strange choice for me. Also, keeping busy with urbanism did not sound bad at all. This academic year I will be responsible for the sponsorships, branding and our viaVIA magazine. Together with Stefan, I will take place in the PR committee to hopefully make the viaVIA even a bigger success. I am ready to write multiple interesting articles to enthusiasm students and also businesses in urbanism and its wide range of subjects. In the articles there will not only be written about the combination of urbanism and architecture, but also about the planning and landscape sides of our study. I hope to open people their eyes and let them see that there is much more to learn than what is shown during lectures. I have faith that it is going to be a great year with the 24th board of VIA, and I am looking forward to amuse you guys with all our activities, knowledge and magazines!
Stefan Dermaux // Lars Kerssens // Marijke Voermans // Daan Clercx // Anna van Rij // Jeroen Bollen
Marijke Voermans â€“ Commissioner of Activities This summer I finished my Bachelor degree, which took me three years. It all happened so fast, and I definitely do not want to rush my Master degree like that. I believe doing a little extra outside of your studies is just as important for your personal development as studying itself. When I crossed paths with VIA, it felt like the perfect opportunity for me to gain real world experiences. I am very excited about being part of the 24th Board of VIA as the commissioner of Activities. The main goal of the activities this year is to bridge the gap between education and practice. Additionally, it gives you (and also me) the opportunity to learn more and to be up to date about the current urban developments and events. I do not doubt that, together with the committee of Activities, we can make this year a successful one; filled with interesting activities. Besides learning something, I sincerely hope you have a lot of fun as well. See you soon at the VIA activities!
year 22, number 53 - November 2016
Stefan Dermaux â€“ Commissioner of Events and Commissioner viaVIA This year, I plan to start my master and hope to be able to do both the Urbanism as the Architecture track of the AUDE department. I chose to join the board of VIA in order to be kept busy with urbanism. I hope to be able to broaden the view of students and myself on this subject. The study trip last year was a great success, and I am enthusiastic to continue this success during a study trip this year. I am looking forward to plan urban activities during the study trip, which will remind people of how cool urbanism is. Also through the viaVIA, I hope to make people enthusiastic about urbanism with the help of inspiring articles. Furthermore, many students (like myself) have interests in both urbanism and architecture. It is important to keep a certain division between these two, as they are both different Master tracks. However, a collaboration is needed because there is a level of overlap. This collaboration will play an important role in planning the study trip, and I am looking forward to work together with AnArchi in order to organize another successful study trip!
STUDYTRIP OF VIA: UNITED KINGDOM Medieval Edinburgh, industrial Glasgow and metropolitan London. These were the three cities VIA and AnArchi, the study associations of Urbanism and Architecture, visited on their joint study trip to the United Kingdom. The trip contained a fully packed program, which some of us felt the need to expand until late in the evening. On our way we were accompanied by dr. Sergio de Sousa Lopes Figueiredo who gave us useful insights into the architectural and urban theory behind certain buildings or places. Edinburgh First on the list was Edinburgh, a city with a medieval and modern face. Straight away on our first day we walked from the Edinburgh Castle right until Arthurâ€™s Seat. Those who werenâ€™t afraid to take it a little further even climbed all the way to the top, to oversee the seven hills of Edinburgh. Once up the hill, one can truly see the landscape mingling with the city. Something that was also visible when walking across the Royal Mile, where every once in a while a magnificent view would pop up through the many different side streets.
The next day, we met with an old professor of our university: Gijs Wallis de Vries. He prepared a little tour through the New Town of Edinburgh. We were amazed by the contrast of the straight and organized New Town compared to the chaotic and medieval Old Town. It became very clear to us why the New Town expansion was so successful. In Edinburgh, a part of the group visited Reiach and Hall architects, where Dermot Patterson gave us an inspiring story on how he related a piece of art to his architecture. The other part of the group was extremely lucky; they got to see LDN Architects who happened to be working on the McEwen Hall, the Graduation hall of Edinburgh University. As you can imagine, renovating in a medieval city can be quite problematic. LDN Architects showed us how they did it and we even got a chance to climb the scaffolding all the way to the top of the dome!
Glasgow Next stop on the road was Glasgow. First visit: The Peopleâ€™s Palace and the Winter Garden, followed by the Merchant Square and the city halls. However, the most impressing building of the day was the Glasgow Cathedral with its nearby Necropolis. The walk uphill also ensured a good view of the cathedral and its greatness. The day ended with a visit to the Lighthouse. This former lighthouse was designed by the city architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh and its extension by Page\ Park. Today it serves as an exhibition space, where there was plenty of activity regarding the Scottish Festival of Architecture. The next Glaswegian day was reserved for the former industrial docklands. Located in this area are the Glasgow Science Center, the Glasgow Tower, the BBC Scotland building and the Riverside Museum. With all the highlights it was planned that the area would transform into a successful urban part of Glasgow, but the lack of residential program caused an area which did not succeed after all. On our last day in Glasgow, we were accompanied by Jamie Hamilton to guide us through the Theatre Royal. Jamie is an architect at Page\Park, who helped on the design of the building. The theater is an amazing design and the combination of different high-end materials causes a luxurious atmosphere in the building. The last visit of the day was the Seona Reid Building by Steven Holl, next to the Glasgow School of Art by Charles Rennie Mackintosh. His design made walking through the extension an experience which interacted with the old Mackintosh design. London Immediately in London we visited the AA School, which housed an exhibition packed with projects from all students, making it absolutely worth the visit. Afterwards, we visited Foster + Partners, who showed us their enormous office next to the river Thames. Waking up the next day, the program was stuffed with all sorts of great things, starting with the Tate Modern, which recently opened their extension. After wandering through all the amazing exhibitions, it was time for Sergio to guide us through the center of London.
Before flying back to Eindhoven, we visited one last urban design office in London. Allies & Morrison was happy to receive us and guided us around their office, which was clearly separated in three different building types with different working groups. Afterwards we can reflect on a great study trip where we visited works of well-known offices from around the world and saw a lot of unexpected beauties in the United Kingdom. It was a busy program which was followed by a well-deserved summer holiday. We, as the organizing committee, would like to thank everybody involved in the trip, from participants to professionals, for the wonderful time we had. We would especially like to thank Sergio de Sousa Lopes Figueiredo for giving us deeper insights in the various projects we visited. Jimmy Hendrickx
Saving the best for last is certainly applicable for our trip. Firstly, we visited the Serpentine Galleries and the sculptural Pavilion of stacked translucent blocks, designed by Bjarke Ingels. Secondly, we visited the Olympic Park, which represents an innovative example of how to deal with these huge areas after the Olympics. Our tour guide explained the history of the area and gave us an impression of how it was like during the Olympics.
year 22, number 53 - November 2016
CORTEX What will Eindhoven and the South East Brabant region look like in 50 years? What if the city grows to a population of a million inhabitants, where will they live, where will they work and where will they spend their free time? How will they care for our valuable nature areas? Patrick Wiercx and Dick Bouman, asked themselves these questions when they started the initiative â€˜Eindhoven Metropolis 2066â€™. Together with the study associations VIA and AnArchi, they organized a 36 hour challenge for 40 students divided in nine groups. All these students have put a lot of effort and creativity in designing different views on how Eindhoven is going to look in 50 years. Hereby, we present you the manifesto of the winning team; Eindhoven in 2066 For millions of years, humankind had been subjected to nature. Depending on Mother Natureâ€™s mood, humans flourished or faded. Life meant clawing at the slippery banks of a thundering river called Nature. At a given moment, Homo Sapiens, through some genetic fuck-up, got a grip on its habitat. This control was concretised by the invention of architecture. With the advance of technology, humans started to conquer their originator. Their activities seriously affected the (increasingly) blue planet. With this recklessness, the species nearly annihilated itself. Beyond the Anthropocene In the year 2066, after a devastating struggle for survival, we have reached a critical moment in history. We have
made the world artificial, and have achieved a state of absolute independence from nature (or what nature used to be). We are now in control of our destiny. The relation between man and nature has reversed, as nature now only exists by the grace of humankind. One aspect of this new reality is that the artificiality of our habitat has become nearly flawless. We generate food in sky-scraping factories. In virtual reality, we travel the world at the speed of light. The population of cities has grown explosively. And as a result of migration, this population is more diverse than ever. The reductionist rhetoric of populist media and politicians did not redeem us from this complicated social reality; nor could we escape from it through virtual entertainment in our highly customizable homes. In such social isolation, what part of the world can we still peacefully and joyfully share with other citizens? What is the meaning of history and nature in this new reality? How do we construct our view of the world and sustain a collective identity? We cannot write stories on the continuously changing paper of virtual reality and rapid urbanization. And so we have become alienated from this synthetic and ephemeral world. In a nostalgic reflex we tried to construct our collective stories on static cities, historical documents that received protection from impenetrable bureaucratic bastions. Cities like Venice and Amsterdam became increasingly inaccessible and even unable to act as a breeding ground for prospective narratives. Rather than uniting people, static cities instigated social segregation and stagnation.
CORTEX CORTEX is an urban revolution. CORTEX unchains us from history. CORTEX allows us to cultivate our collective history, and individually transcend that history. CORTEX is a self-sustaining system in which we can construct inconceivable worlds. It is the ultimate playground for experiment and interchange. CORTEX is BIG. Thanks to its circular transit system, everyone is able to reach a million fellow inhabitants within ten minutes. Revolving at high speed, CORTEX facilitates a circular culture of congestion. CORTEX is surrounded by a cultivated uncultivated nature, featuring windy moors grazed by hairy highland cattle and rocky hillsides infested with mountain lions. This prehistoric nature (NL: â€˜Oernatuurâ€™) is ever close at hand. Here, we can experience a vulnerability to the violence of nature. It lets us encounter authentic fear of death, which stabilizes our socially constructed and artificial reality. Oernatuur offers a sensation of primordial freshness.
year 22, number 53 - November 2016
With nature stretched out to an infinite safari park and the past contained in an accessible center, CORTEX reconfigures and materializes our relation to nature and to each other. When we feel lost, and when we despair for community, CORTEX serves introspection. CORTEX frames the center as a living mystification of the past, recording our greatest achievements and transgressions. We see a history of continuous migration in search of a better place, and observe that the better place is only what we - all wanderers in virtual and physical space collectively construct. CORTEX is a metropolitan cabin in the wilderness. Surrounded by our legendary antagonist Oernatuur, we re-establish the city as a collective construct, committed to an effort of ultimate rebellion against nature: ARCHITECTURE. Jasper Brus, Rik de Bondt, Lisa Timmers, Joep Worms
CO2 NOx PM10
increase biodiversity o
cooling the city
Anton en Gerard, Strijp-S, Eindhoven The Green Village, Delft
Rieteiland Oost, IJburg, Amsterdam
smart society Cruquius, Amsterdam
When the term Smart Cities is mentioned ideas of a hightech urban environment pop up: electric-autonomous cars, big data steers people in the right direction and packages are delivered by a drone. But in this exciting world of tech-toys it is good to remember that Smart City does not always equal hightech. Smart solutions can be analog as well! Buro Lubbers has a lot of experience in using smart techniques in our projects. Ranging from green roofs to rainwater infiltration, from portable trees and temporary structures to flexible frameworks.
ANALOG SMART CITY SOLUTIONS Reutsedijk 13 | 5264 PC | Vught | T 073 6149321 mail firstname.lastname@example.org | site www.burolubbers.nl
CLAIM THE SMART CITY! The term Smart City has been buzzing around the field of architecture and urbanism for a while now, and yet it remains a complex subject to grasp for designers. But its relevancy is clear: new technologies are being fitted in the urban fabric in which we are planning interventions. How do we as urban designers deal with the fast developments of the smart city?
set up to experiment with new technologies, which is an interesting method of developing as it happens in actual city life. But they only investigate parts of the whole, without a vision of what the city could be.
There are well-known ‘smart city’ examples such as Songdo and Masdar, which were designed ‘smart’, but they are known for the criticism on them as well. So the question remains what really makes a city smart. The aim of making cities smart as defined by Faena Sphere: “Smart cities propose an urban development that efficiently uses information and technology with the goal of raising the quality of life for its inhabitants.” At Buro Lubbers we have an idea of what quality of life means and how we strive to achieve it for future users in our plans. We are learning more and more about gathering information from the urban environment, and how technology is introduced in the city. Nonetheless the concept smart city remains vague.
City councils do not have a clear overarching vision, so the market determines in which direction the city evolves. The goal of the smart city is a better living environment and a better quality of life for its inhabitants. Something as important and complex as quality of life calls for an integral approach. In itself a lack of a fixed final image of the smart city is not a problem. A trend in urbanism is creating a set of rules, from which new developments should follow, instead of designing a completely finished masterplan. The design then focusses on a firm framework for public life that coordinates new developments, rather than it dictates what should happen where. This leaves room for new initiatives, which are unknown at the start of a process. In a coordinating role urbanists can combine new ‘smart’ technology with urban knowledge accumulated over centuries.
This vagueness emerges most clearly in city councils, who struggle with this as well. In the vision statements for their own smart city often generic information is given, concluded by generic goals. These are ‘clarified’ in catch-all terms such as sustainability, mobility and circular city. Cities try to be at the forefront of the smart city movement, but do not have a clear idea about how their city would benefit from being ‘smart’. All in all on paper most cities seem to be much talk and little action. Of course there are examples of projects where cities are involved, ranging from smart grids to electric busses. But, what often characterises these projects is that they are initiated by tech companies, rather than on the demand of cities in response to a problem. This results in a sprawl of uncoherent projects, which sometimes seem to be implemented just for the sake of technology. Cities allow this as they are in a race to the newest technologies but seem to forget technology is not the goal itself.
With growing populations in cities urban designers and architects stand for a challenge and we need to think differently about our cities. We will need the help from creative technology in order to solve urban issues, but need to keep in mind that not all ‘smart’ solutions are necessarily high-tech. We already have smart ways to improve quality of life, by thinking about biodiversity, rainwater infiltration, green roofs and walls, community gardens, flexibility and so on. Buro Lubbers actively implements this in projects such as Anton en Gerard and The Green Village in Delft. We think that with the combined knowledge of designers and tech-companies the smart city can become real and concrete. In other words: we need to get a hold on these developments and start creating the smart city. The vagueness that surrounds the development of the smart city calls for someone to take the lead. Urbanists and architects (re)claim your position in the smart city!
At this moment tech companies are furthest in the knowledge about smart cities, as they are the developers of the technology. Their focus as a company lies on the proper functioning of a product, exploring its possibilities and weighing ethical dilemmas, but they lack knowledge about urbanism or architecture. Rem Koolhaas expressed this shift well: “..the city used to be the domain of the architect, and now, frankly, they have made it their domain.” Together with cities living-labs are
Joost van Gorkom Buro Lubbers
GREETINGS FROM ISTANBUL “Never a tourist, and not just a student. Maybe an urban explorer” For a long time, I was thinking about going abroad to work or study. When I decided to apply to the Erasmus program and got the chance to study abroad the most difficult phase of the process began: making a decision. More than fifteen countries and one or two universities at each country had an Erasmus agreement with my home university (Yildiz Technical University, Istanbul) and it wasn’t easy to decide which university to choose. To gain more information, I searched through a great variety of sources such as university websites, personal experiences of friends that joined Erasmus program previous years and so on. I made a list of all the pros and cons, not only about education but also about the people, the climate, and living conditions. Based on these data, I made the decision to go studying at the TU/e (by the way yes I had heard about the weather!). The first reason for choosing the TU/e was the quality of education (according to my research it was one of the best among my options) and the courses related to my field of interest. The second reason is the contrast between the cities of the Netherlands and the ones in Turkey. It isn’t just a set of courses, but for me, it was mostly about the experience. So I decided to choose the one which differed the most from my home. Quite a different landscape, climate, population etc. And then the adventure started. From Istanbul, in other words “the city on the seven hills” with a population of 15 million people, to Eindhoven, with just 216.000 inhabitants. And my first impression involved bicycles! A lot of bicycles! My search for different experiences continued while I was selecting courses. At my home university I already finished all my architectural courses and before starting my thesis I wanted to gain knowledge about urban planning. Taking urban planning courses in a different urban setting seemed interesting to me. Therefore, I enrolled into the project and courses of the master Urban Design. An example of a course was Urban Form. With those courses about urbanism, I experienced cities in a different way. As a student from Istanbul, always dealing with growing cities, I learned about new problems such as shrinking cities. I learned about some urban trends and I analysed the environment from different perspectives. In Eindhoven, I was not a tourist or only a student. I was also a researcher,which gave me
multiple point of views. During a master project we had to design a landscape for the future. I spent most of my time working on the project and I tried to explore the project area, between Eindhoven and Helmond. While I was walking or biking through the project area, I enjoyed the landscape, while trying to look at the landscape as an urbanism student as well. I would say the most impressive and the most dominant urban element (if its true to say ‘element’) in the Netherlands is the bicycle. I tried to focus on bicycles and sharing mobility systems in the project during the group studies and individually, and I have enjoyed cycling with my friends and by myself. The last and the only sad phase of my exchange was returning back home. I passed all the courses, sold my bicycle and I said goodbye to the flat landscape, canals, parks, trains… Greetings from Istanbul, Neslihan Imamoğlu
VIA ABROAD PRETORIA This is South Africa. Or maybe better, my story of South Africa. The past semester I’ve been studying on the University of Pretoria where I’ve completed my second master project. I’ve been given the chance to share my experiences in this column, so here we go! The program I took part in was an honors program that consisted of 45 people with me being the only exchange student. The standards of the program are very high and it’s tough for South African students to apply. Most students actually have to work at least one year, some of them even five, after their bachelor to gain enough experience and get accepted. A result of this is that the work environment is very professional and everyone is very dedicated to their projects. The group consists of architecture, landscape and interior design students which all work together for a great part of the course. One of the biggest differences between working in the Netherlands and working in South Africa was that there’s often no existing data or even internet (I will never complain about my internet speed ever again) which means you can leave your laptop at home most of the time. The first quarter was entirely dedicated to field research which had to result into a large scale design proposal. During our many hours on site, which aren’t that bad in the African sun, we documented the environment around our site and the way people use it. Because there is often no documentation, you have to address people on the street or simply walk into buildings and
ask around to find out what happens there. From my Dutch perspective, this almost felt adventurous. But in some way,, the streets of Pretoria can be really dangerous. As one of the few Caucasian people in the entire city center, walking around with expensive cameras, taking notes of everything, you attract a lot of attention. In the city center you always have to keep an eye out for your safety. Pretoria is a city with more than 5000 homeless people and an unemployment rate of 26,7%. This is noticeable everywhere. There are many beggars on the street, in stores and people try to come up with their own jobs. There’s literally a car guard in every street. As you actually start designing you notice how complex society is and how much people demands differ from each other. Most students tried to design for the homeless or at least give them a role in the program. Compare this to the Netherlands where we have park benches especially designed to make it impossible to sleep on them. For me this was a very different view on design and the dedication students put into improving people’s lives, made me realize what architecture can achieve in a different society. In hindsight, my choice to go to South Africa was one of the best ones I’ve ever made. I have gained new perspectives on architecture, made friends for live, travelled more than ever before. I can recommend everyone to go there and discover this amazing country. Koen Dohmen
CONTEST Liquid Landscapes Crossword Puzzel
Water design knows a large amount of specific terms. Can you help us to retrieve some of them? Answers the descriptions below and place the terms in the coherent columns.
8. 3. 1.
1. Largest artificial lake in the Netherlands 5. Polluted and undrinkable water 7. A small waterway 8. When one experiences a water shortage, there is ... 9. Domestic building on the water
2. Essential liquid for farming 3. Design solution for excessive amount of water in cities 4. Bridge for water 6. Something unnatural 10. As the climate changes, rivers will ...
Send your answer of the contest to email@example.com before 31 December 2016
Anne Frank Plantsoen
Ciy meeting place
Neighborhood meeting place
YOUNG FAMILIES IN THE CITY Designing for shifting family life patterns in Eindhoven More young families choose to live in the city. This has not always been the case, but it is a relative recent phenomenon. In previous decades a strong suburbanization trend resulted in families with children moving to the fringes of the city. At that time, cities were not considered a suitable place for children to grow up. Recently this has changed, more young people want to live in the city and continue to do so even after they have kids. In the city parents are enabled to combine various social, cultural and economic activities with childcare. This research is about them. But how suitable is the city center for kids to grow up in? The complication is that city center neighborhoods are not designed with kids in mind. Compared to the past there is less space available for children. For example, increased car ownership, the placement of garbage containers and bike stalls have limited the amount of physical space available for kids. At the same time, there is less social control as there are fewer kids outside. With less kids on the street it is harder for them to claim the street. This all resulted in the public domain slowly transforming from a child space to an adult space. Because parents are concerned with the safety of their child they increasingly escort their children from point A to B. In the literature they are referred to as the ‘backseat generation’. Their space behavior is characterized by a diverse geography of adult organized activities, such as soccer practice or music lessons. This all results in children playing more indoors. For example, when kids are asked about their favorite play activity, they most often name one inside. But outdoor play is important for various physical and cognitive developmental reasons, in order to learn to interact with other kids for example.
As example of this process De Bergen, a gentrifying city center neighborhood in Eindhoven, has been researched. A conceptual framework was developed to distinguish the various neighborhood levels that are important as social exchange places for the kids as well as the parents. The concept has taken the form of a neighborhood system where four different levels are differentiated. It considers meeting places on city, neighborhood and street level. These three levels are connected through a family ribbon that aims to decrease the dependency on the parents. The whole system empowers the children to become more autonomous in the public space. For two of these levels, sites have been selected to be redesigned. They have been redesigned with the young families in mind. One of these areas, the ‘Treffina Veldje’, was developed in collaboration with some of the active neighborhood stakeholders. The other one, the ‘Anne Frankplantsoen’, was developed in a more self-contained way. The design process of the Treffina area is the main focus of the thesis. Through an iterative design process with the stakeholders, a basic plan was drafted for the redesign Treffina area, transforming it from a playground to a neighborhood meeting space. The area is now a tight and skimpy space but the potential for development is high. It is located in the middle of the neighborhood and is surrounded by various social institutions. The concept is that residents take on the redevelopment of the area themselves through an already present grassroots development initiative. Development and maintenance is taken on by the residents to make it a space created for and by the neighborhood.
Besides the role of residents, the plan also facilitates the involvement of the social organizations, such as a community center for veterans. The design aims to bring together residents with the social institutions of the neighborhood, but not yet an integrated part of it. By making physical connections to the organizations it enables them to expose themselves in the public domain. An important consideration of the design is familiarization among different resident and social institutions in the neighborhood. The design tries to facilitate the interaction between the parties. If residents become more aware of other residents and social organizations in their neighborhood, they can bridge to other groups outside of their everyday social circles. For example, getting to know the community center might decrease the step to do volunteer work there, or getting to know your neighbor might reduce the step to ask for a service or help to fight loneliness of the elders. It all increases social bonds in the neighborhood. The design was presented in a neighborhood gathering where all involved parties were invited. It resulted in a renewed collaboration between neighbors that share different views on how to develop the neighborhood. The presentation reframed the problem to start a conversation between the parties. This result is valuable because at the start of the design the different parties were not communicating with each other due to events that took place in the past. In the end, the presentation was a step to literally bring the stakeholders back together in one room. Chris Steenhuis
LIQUID LANDSCAPES Water is one of the first needs of mankind. We have to drink enough water to live healthy, but water is also an important factor in our everyday surroundings. A huge part of our world exists of water. Naturally, many different design methods regarding water have been used during the last years. New ways of designing with water were invented on a large scale but also on a small scale. Besides, more water problems are occurring, wherefore new solutions have to be found. Currently, our climate is changing and because of these changes natural disasters are caused due to water problems. How should we deal with this now and in
the future? These are interesting questions and therefor chosen as the theme of this edition of the viaVIA. To learn more about these different ways of coping with water, different articles are written and can be read on the next pages. Several ongoing themes will be discussed such as; how will water be managed in mega cities and how should we cope with water cycle management in general? An interview is given by Ruut van Paridon about how their office designs with water in different cities. New ways of making land in the water and building on water are discussed such as experiencing water in a city.
Anouk van Otterlo
WATER SHORTAGE IN MEGACITIES. HOW TO DEAL WITH IT?
To start, lets first explain what megacities are. Megacities have multiple definitions, but in this article megacities are described as metropolitan areas which contain more than 10 million inhabitants, mostly caused by large migration from the rural to the urban areas. In 2015, there were thirty of these cities in the world. Two are located in Europe, and twelve in China and India . The United Nations has predicted there will be 41 megacities by 2030. Enough reason to learn more about them! These Megacities are facing many complex issues, of which one of them certainly is the increasing water scarcity and air pollution. It has many social, technical, economic, institutional, cultural and environmental dimensions, which makes it extremely difficult to manage. This article will provide a brief insight in the current water systems and problems of two Megacities and its causes. New Mexico and Delhi will be compared and of course the final question will be answered: how to deal with water issues? Some causes of water issues in these megacities in general are continuing urbanization, lack of investments funds for constructing and maintaining water infrastructures, poverty, high public debts, insufficient resources, inadequate governmental, institutional policies and of course long droughts and climate changes.
Delhi In Delhi, all of the causes mentioned above are visible, but some of them are more critical. To begin with the available water. The Yamuna river, is the only major water supply for 18 million inhabitants. Therefore, the pollution of this water immediately leads to a shortage of drinking and clean water. Long droughts, multifunctional use of the river, such as bathing and cultural and religious activities, do not contribute to increase the supply of clean water as well. In addition Delhiâ€™s unplanned urbanization and industrialization leads to inadequate sewerage, on-site sanitation, and wastewater treatment facilities in one hand, and lack of effective pollution control measures and their strict enforcement on the other hand. (H. Hadara; S.K. Karn, 2001).
â€œDue to the decreasing groundwater level in megacities, transporting water from long distances becomes more crucial, and too expansiveâ€? Because of the rapid urbanization, drinking water facilities are not available for every house hold and still need to be realized. The construction of this system started in the more advanced neighborhoods. This resulted in a situation in which the higher classes have
a better access to cheaper, governmentally regulated water. While the lower classes depend on private parties to provide them of clean water, which is obviously more expensive. In other words, the people who need clean, cheap water the most, have the least access to it (Alankar, 2009). New Mexico Mexico City is, just as Delhi, an extremely large megacity. The metropolitan area has 20 million inhabitants, with population densities in some areas exceeding 13.500 persons per square kilometer. Therefore, the provision of water supplies and sanitation should be efficient and equitable, which simply cannot be met under the existing conditions. Mostly due to the lack of investment funds and governmental policies. The municipality currently only focusses on water supply management, without taking the water demand management into account. Since the groundwater level is decreasing drastically, the city has to transport more water from long distances and expensive sources. This has economic, social and environmental impact on the exporting regions and higher land subsidence rates. Therefore the system has to change, and a long-term water management plan, which currently does not exist, together with a good policy on urban development are essential.
How to deal with it? It is extremely difficult to manage the water systems of Mega Cities, since the enormous legal and illegal growth can hardly been kept up with. There is political instability and the cities are facing many institutional issues as well. In the case of Delhi, it is mostly about the unequally divided power, and therefore high water prices, which lead to illegal unhealthy alternative water sources. In New Mexico, the government is deducting clean water, but do not care about the equal distribution. Thus in both cases the inequality in combination with accelerating urban growth is the key issue. What can we do about it? It will be a tremendous list of problems to solve. A clear political system, which also takes equal distribution into account, would be a good first step towards less water shortage. Mark van Esdonk
Sources -Alankar (2009). The politics of water management in Delhi. Retrieved from http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/ handle/10603/29995 - H. Hadara, S.K. Kam (2001). Surface Water Pollution in Three Urban Territories of Nepal, India, and Bangladesh. Retrieved from http:// link.springer.com/article/10.1007/ s002670010238 - Government of NCT of Delhi (2014). Sewerage Master Plan For Delhi - 2031. -Cornelissen, T.H., Esdonk van M.J. (2015). Essay Urban Planet -Tortajada (2007). Water management in Mexico City metropolitan Area. Retrieved from: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/ pdf/10.1080/07900620600671367 - Castelรกn, Tortajada (2003). Water management for a Megacity: Mexico City Metropolitan Area. Retrieved from: http://www.bione.org/doi/ pdf/10.1579/044-7447-32.2.124 - Varis, Biswas, Tortajada, Lundqvist (2006). Megacities and Water Management. Pictures Left: Residents of a Delhi colony crowd around a water tanker provided by Delhi Jal (water) Board to fill their containers. (Photo: Reuters). Retrieved from: https://www. thequint.com/politics/2016/04/13/ delhi-bjp-objects-to-kejriwals-moveto-send-water-to-latur Right: Urban Hell - Mexico City Sprawl. washintonpost.com. Retrieved from: Https://www.reddit. com/r/UrbanHell/comments/4bwr7r/ mexico_city_sprawl/
year 22, number 53 - November 2016
THE DUTCH APPROACH an interview with Ruut van Paridon Water, the Dutch have a renowned experience considering this topic. Our engineers are invited all over the world for their expertise. This also applies to urban planners and landscape architects. Ruut van Paridon shared his experiences in an interview about water projects in Cork and Dublin, Ireland. Using the name Flumina Hiberniae 2040 more than 300 case studies are tackled by a team of experts led by REDscape Landscape and Urbanism.
“When you have experienced the structure and process in Ireland, you realise how well structured the Dutch system is.” During the project, Van Paridon x de Groot landscape architects have worked together with Dutch partners and the Irish government in order to prevent floods. Multiple cities in Ireland have experienced heavy floods over the past years. Due to a lack of good communication between different fields of work, which resulted in little cooperation, Ireland is far behind on its water management.
To this day, the Irish have had a very straightforward approach towards water problems. Their solutions were simple and local like built a wall. “There was a large lack of a broader scope.” The communication between the different departments, such as water management and road management, is very bad. For example, main roads and residential areas are being constructed which are so badly positioned that a little rise of the water level
already causes floods. Therefore, the cities miss out on a structural organization of the area. This is why we think “Urbanism is a true expertise.” Van Paridon x de Groot landscape architects noticed these structural problems. They wanted to find a way to handle the water problems on a totally different level. It was necessary to do research by means of designing. The days of just building a wall to prevent flooding have passed if you ask van Paridon x de Groot. The key is not to prevent the flooding but to tackle the roots of the problem. This is the case because climate change will lead to higher peaks of discharge, which will not be solvable by building a wall. If higher walls are going to be build, the residential areas and water will segregate even more, and the residential areas will repel from the water. This would be bad, because in these areas there is a lot of potential quality (spatial, recreational and ecological) for the quality of life. For example, in a case study nearby Cork a river keeps stepping outside the banks on the southern fork. Meanwhile the northern fork is able to capture more water. A solution can be to forward more water into the northern fork, or to make a bypass. But, this is just one solution for one case. Van Paridon x de Groot made multiple approaches for a couple of case studies. They brought them an area vision for the future in which space and freedom for the unconventional is bought.
Also, while researching and observing Ireland, Van Pardion x de Groot soon learned that all big cities are positioned at the coast, and more important at the estuary. During high tide whole city centers can flood with multiple centimeters, or even meters. The medieval solutions are not coordinated, but with the help of Flumina Hiberniae 2040 the search for a fitting problem solver was opened. The Dutch view on the cases has been refreshing. But how do you get the opportunity to work on such a big and important project? Incidentally an old classmate of Ruut van Paridon saw the floodings and wanted to solve the problems. He invited Van Paridon x de Groot landscape architects to work on the project together with others. A big project with stakeholders as Ireland, Dublin and the Dutch incentive for architecture emerged and it was really fun and challenging to puzzle with the different disciplines. During one case in Dublin, the Irish people only named the problem (there is a lot of water in the streets fix it) without giving the context.
“We once said to the water ‘this is far enough, you are not going to engulf more of our land” This was really strange for Ruut van Paridon because in the Netherlands he was really used to working with water and the Dutch landscape, but not on a small scale without context. He and his colleagues found a new approach for the cases by tackling the root of the problem and not in making small scale solutions. They first wanted to solve the water level in the outskirts, tackling this in the city would follow. Ruut van Paridon believed that their designs had to be different than the earlier solutions. They had to be more fun and creative. Water is really amusing and it is key to communicate that through their designs. Not only technical designs have to be made, like the Irish were already doing, but more entertaining ones like in Zurich. Looking at other cases and how they handled it was necessary to stay open minded and to get inspiration.
“Urbanism is really a profession which not everyone is suited to do” Flumina Hiberniae 2040 was Ruut van Paridon his first project in Ireland. He already worked abroad a couple times before and witnessed that the Dutch view was really refreshing and important to them. Earlier in his life he did not have the ambition to work abroad. He loved the Dutch landscape so there was no need. But during time he got the insight that you can take a really good look on your own country, the Netherlands, by looking at other countries. Us as students gather a lot of knowledge and built expertise on the TU/e which is important to use boundless. ‘Urbanism is really a profession which not everyone is suited to do’. The problems in Ireland are not easily solved because of the different regulations and very bad communication between engineers. There is a yawning gap between the resources and reality. An important part of this story is that you cannot tackle the problem on your own, you need a team with multiple experts. That is why the collaboration between different firms is such a good thing. Population can only tackle a small part of the problem. “Water in the city begins at home”, but knowledge and good resources are needed to make solutions a bigger success. Anna van Rij Bram Nuijten
The cases in Ireland were fascinating because here in the Netherlands we do not have such problems. We tackled them many years ago by defending our coasts. We once said to the water ‘this is far enough, you are not going to engulf more of our land’. Ireland did not do that and now the Irish are not protected by their own country. They have to shield their own properties. The community even established their own organization in which they share the little information they have on how to protect their land. They really took matters into their own hands. With those hands they even occasionally fill sandbags to build their own dike. This community is really vigorous but they do not have the capacity needed to make it a long term success year 22, number 53 - November 2016
WATER SENSITIVE URBAN DESIGN
Urban developments to accommodate a growing community will have consequential impacts on the land- and water environments. In the future, we will experience some climate changes. While some countries will have more floods, others might have more droughts. The rainfall is getting more intense; look at the heavy hailstorms and rainfall in the Southeast of the Netherlands last year. Solutions will be needed to prevent floods and droughts in the near future. Adapting Urban Water Systems will be a necessity to the changing climate.
Water Sensitive Urban Design Traditional water systems are structured from a central point, and provide water towards the users. Within the system, water is not seen as a limited resource. There are three separate water systems integrated into the urban environments, namely; the potable water supply, the sewerage system and the storm water drainage system. The Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) was first only associated with the storm water management, but nowadays it is seen as a holistic management of the urban water cycle and will be integrated in the urban design. In 2000, at the inaugural conference on WSUD in Melbourne, four issues were identified to underpin the effective implementation of WSUD, namely; regulatory framework, assessment and costing, technology and design, and community acceptance. The definition of WSUD sometimes confuses practitioners. WSUD is defined as â€œthe integration of urban planning with the management, protection,
and conservation of the urban water cycle, that ensures that urban management is sensitive to natural hydrological and ecological processes.â€? (Wong, 2007) The importance of water sensitive urban design is that it shows interaction between the urban built form and the integrated management of the urban water cycle. WSUD Melbourne At the moment Melbourne is the most livable city in the world. They also would like to stay that for several years. Therefore, with future global climate change in mind, Melbourne is looking at itself by searching possible problems, which should be handled with care. For this reason, the city started with improving the water management system in the city, to face the challenges caused by global climate change. Besides the arrival of the climate change, they are also expecting
an increase in population which will ask for a higher demand of water. Therefore, Melbourne designs itself to become a water sensitive city. Melbourneâ€™s water supply Australia is known as the worldâ€™s driest inhabited continent with a population of 21 million, wherefrom 89 percent lives in urban areas. During drought periods, it is difficult to find adequate water resources in the cities. Melbourne itself is a city with around four million people located alongside the coast. The city has been hit by eight major droughts during her 166year history. The Millennium Drought was the most recent drought which lasted more than a decade. It altered the public view about global climate change, water conservation, and water-use behaviors. This drought showed everyone how vulnerable the city was. Melbourne gains most of its water from protected stream catchments, located in uninhabited mountain ash forests to the north of the city. The water is collected in water reservoirs and from there, through a network of aqueducts and pipelines, it is transported to storage reservoirs. This is a safe, low-energy, and mostly reliable source of high-quality drinking water for the city. When the city started developing a 50year vision for Melbourne as a Water Sensitive City, they asked participants to identify principles that will guide the city
year 22, number 53 - November 2016
how it should plan, invest, design, manage, regulate, monitor and evaluated the actions in the desired future. Participants agreed a focus on water and environment is needed. In the end, the Water Sensitive City vision had four overlapping themes: Social and Ecological Health, Connected Communities, Shared Prosperity and Our Water System. Looking at the fourth theme, it was noticed that the water system should embrace the many values water has. Besides, the municipality underlined the importance of a smart, integrated, connected and flexible water system. Lastly, it was advised that the system should use the resources efficiently.
In order to create a Water Sensitive City of Melbourne, it is important to connect, envision, learn, implement and foster resilience. In order to create a Water Sensitive City of Melbourne, it is important to connect, envision, learn, implement and foster resilience. These themes should be part of the process from the first to the last step. It is important to transform the current water culture in the city on individual, organizational and institutional scales into a new water culture with these themes in mind.
Sources - Brown, R. (n.d.). Transition to Water Sensitive Urban Design: the story of Melbourne, Australia. Presentation for National Urban Water Governance Program. Monash University. - Wong, T.H.F. (2007). Water Sensitive Urban Design - the Journey Thus far. Australian Journal of Water Resources. Volume 11. - Rijke, J.S., de Graaf, R.E., van de Ven, F.H.M., Brown, R., Biron, D. (2010). Comparative case studies towards mainstreaming Water Sensitive Urban Design in Australia and the Netherlands. Delft University of Technology. - Melbourne water (n.d.). Stormwater management. Retrieved on August 2016. From: http://melbournewater.com.au/Planning-and-building/ Stormwater-management/Pages/ Stormwater-management.aspx - Grant, S.B. (2013). Adapting Urban Water Systems to a Changing Climate: Lessons from the Millennium Drought in Southeast Australia. Environmental Science & Technology. 2013, 47, 10727-10734. Pictures Left: Nathalie Snels Right: Melbourne water (n.d.). Introduction to WSUD. Retrieved on October 2016. From: http:// www.melbournewater.com.au/planning-and-building/stormwater-management/water-sensitive-urban-design/pages/the-wsud-approach.aspx
ARTIFICIAL LAND Artificial land is not an ordinary type of land, it is actually quite remarkable. This type of land is not formed by nature but created by us: humans. Man-made land can vary in size from small pieces of land, that house only one person or a small family, to large pieces of land, that house entire cities or even an entire province. In the past, artificial land was for instance used to create extra farmland to provide an entire region of food. But nowadays, we see artificial land mainly being used for housing purposes where there is a need for more space. Artificial land is created at places where water used to be and is therefore under constant danger of floods, storms and erosion. Every piece of artificial land has a different type of protection system, depending on how it is formed, its location, its size and more. Based on three different artificial land projects, this article will give an overview of why they were built, how they were built and how they are protected against the influences of the water.
Flevoland, the Netherlands Fifty years ago, the Netherlands officially only had eleven provinces. But, after the reclamation of the Zuiderzee Flevoland was created in 1986. The Zuiderzee was reclaimed because the areas surrounding it kept flooding after storms, and because the country needed more farmland to provide the country of food. Flevoland is a polder, this implies the land lays below the water level surrounding it, making the area vulnerable to the influence of the water. The dikes constructed around the artificial land, together with several pumping systems and floodgates, protect Flevoland against the flooding that used to happen in the past. Flevoland consists of three pieces of land that were reclaimed one-by-one. A fourth piece was never reclaimed, because the need of farmland decreased as the years progressed. Nowadays, Flevoland is an attractive area to live, work and recreate. An area characterized by large pieces of open space and a strict layout that is the home of 400.000 inhabitants of the Netherlands.
Palm Jumeirah, Dubai Palm Jumeirah is the first and smallest palm shaped artificial island of Dubai. This project is created as a part of the multibillion dollar investment to transform Dubai into a luxurious tourist destination, which would provide a new source of income after the oil supply would run out. Creating an enormous artificial island in front of the coast was seen as the best option to extend the coastline of Dubai, as it would be too short to house all needed facilities to become that one-of-a-kind luxurious tourist destination. A paradise island was envisioned and the shape of the palm tree island was born.
â€œInfluenced by water, artificial land is under constant danger of floods, storms and erosion.â€? Compared to Flevoland, the land was not reclaimed but the seafloor was lifted. For the island to blend in with its surroundings, it was made completely out of rocks and sand. But, these materials make the island vulnerable to the influences of nature. Especially the Shamal sand storms that hit Dubai often. To protect the artificial island, a massive breakwater is constructed in a circular shape around Palm Jumeirah. This breakwater must be able to fight against tidal changes, high waves and strong storms. To face all these challenges the breakwater is made three meters high and is backed by a 200 meter wide beach. To help fresh water to flow into the boundaries caused by the breakwater, two large gaps where made in the breakwater that allow tidal movements to take place that will refresh the water. Palm Jumeirah was the first of the three planned palm shaped island of Dubai that was built. After Palm Jumeirah, Dubai has built several other artificial island to further extend the length of its coastline in order to house all the facilities needed to be a luxurious tourist destination.
unprotected waters. But, that did not stop Sowa from building another one. Joyxee island is located in a lagoon of Isla Mujeres in Mexico and was built by using more than 100.000 plastic bottles. Built on top of these plastic bottles is a three-storey house with running water and electricity plus many more luxurious facilities such as a jacuzzi and internet. The island is open for visitors and in exchange for a donation you can get a tour around the island.
Sources - Dissel, A.M.C. van, 1991. 59 jaar eigengereide doeners in Flevoland, Noordoostpolder en Wieringermeer. 1st ed. Zutphen: Walburg Pers. -Joyxee Spiral Island. Retrieved from: http://joysxee.wixsite.com/joysxeespiralisland/info - National Geographic, Impossible structures: Palm Island. Retrieved from: http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/man-made/videos/ palm-islands/ - Over Flevoland. Retrieved from: http://www.flevoland.nl/Wie-zijn-we/ Over-Flevoland
The examples have shown that artificial land comes in different shapes, sizes, and locations across the world. This ordinary type of land is always at risk, and every project needs its own specific type of protection system to prevent it from being destroyed by water or other influences of nature. Creating artificial land is very time, and money, consuming. In the future, new techniques and knowledge will hopefully help to ease the construction and preservation of artificial land, and will provide the ability to create even more extraordinarily shaped artificial islands than the Palm Jumeirah.
- Regiocanon Flevoland. Retrieved from: http://www.regiocanons.nl/ flevoland/flevoland/ - Richart Sowa: A green island made of plastic bottles. Retrieved from: http://greentravelife.com/richartsowa-a-green-island-made-of-plastibottles/ Pictures Left: Palm Jumeirah. Retrieved from: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-prPWaT113RA/TWpqYsb1yRI/ AAAAAAAAAc4/pflUimvSC7M/ s1600/Palm_jumeirah_core.jpg Right: Jeyxee Island. Retrieved from: http://greentravelife.com/wp-content/ uploads/2013/09/Island_1.jpg
Joyxee Island, Mexico A floating artificial island, built by Richart Sowa, made entirely out of plastic bottles he found on the beaches of Mexico. Joyxee Island is not the first artificial island he built, his first two islands were destroyed by hurricanes because they were located in year 22, number 53 - November 2016
FLOATING HOUSES MORE THAN PLEASANT LIVING In the Netherlands we see it quite often: houseboats along the canals. These floating houses have been a part of the environment since 1950. At that time Amsterdam was experiencing a housing shortage, so new housing sites had to be devised . Nowadays, we see more construction on the water surface. This is not limited to single family housing, but it also entails pavilions, student-buildings and even prisons.
But why should we build on water? First of all many people experience living near water as more pleasant. This assumption can be found back in the housing prices one finds moderate. The closer one wants to live to the water the more someone is willing to pay. So living near water can be considered, next to be pleasant, as popular. Secondly, building on the water is extremely flexible. This starts with the production. One does not have to transport all materials to a worksite, but can construct the building in a workshop. Subsequently the building can be transported over the water. In addition, when a building is no longer necessary, it can be towed away and used on a different location. An interesting example for this flexibility are the solar powered floating schools in Bangladesh. This country is struggling with huge rainfall during the monsoons. In some parts of the country, schools are flooded for 3 to 4 months. Because of flexible floating schools, children have the opportunity to continue their education.
At last, buildings on the water surface could play a very important role in responding to climate change. In most coastal areas the water level of the sea will rise by approximately 20 centimeters. The consequences will be substantially different in each region. One region that will definitely be affected is, again, Bangladesh. It is estimated that a third of its land will be lost due to a rising water level and the occurrence of more cyclones. The government has planned to develop around 2500 elevated cyclone shelters to accommodate households who lost their homes due to the extreme weather.These are meant to house families temporarily and even includes space for farm animals. The families in Bangladesh tend to be very stubborn about getting evacuated when they can not bring their most important household assets, which is their livestock. That is why the boats are not only meant to house families temporarily, but even include space for farm animals. In addition the boats can produce their own vegetables on beds of water hyacinth. These boats includes a duck vessel and fishing system as well. All of these features are integrated in a closed recycling loop. However, floating buildings can also be integrated in the already existing built environment. Cities have been expanding fast in the last century and will continue doing so. For example London, where 49,000 new homes have to be constructed before 2050. The
London government has designated four growing areas on the mainland but will also transform the Royal Victoria Dock. The five hectares of water surface can not be trespassed by commercial ships since the 1980â€™s and will now be converted to a vibrant living area with enough space for restaurants and cafĂŠs. The Carillion Igloo Genesis consortium has designed a plan based on IJburg in Amsterdam. The new floating village will contain 50 new homes and a square of water, and is defined by a marketplace and floating corniche. Future residents are involved in the design of the custom built houses. The future floating buildings will not be produced on the water but will be transported to their final destination once they are completed. The buildings and walkways will be anchored to a number of piles in the dock and will be connected to the land with the help of bridges.
Rotterdam. The fact that the Dutch have these floats is no coincidence since our little country has always been struggling with water due to its position below sea level. In the future we probably have to adapt even more to this kind of planning, while we are facing a sea level rise of 35 now to 85 centimeters in 2100. According to the committee Water management 21st century we have to reserve a space as big as the province of Utrecht to store water in the future. Meanwhile, land is becoming increasingly scarce and expensive. An explicit opportunity to keep on building on water. Catalien Peerdeman
Sources -Beatley, T. Urban design for a blue planet, 2014. pp: 61-83. -Brouwer, R. De baten van wonen aan water: Een hedonische prijsstudie naar de relatie tussen huizenprijzen, watertypen en waterkwaliteit. -https://www.london.gov.uk/whatwe-do/transport/our-vision-transport/ growth-areas -http://www.londonsroyaldocks.com/ future-development/ -http://www.shidhulai.org/ Pictures Left: Floating school Bangladesh, Photo: Studentsrebuilt Right: IJburg Amsterdam, Photo: Marcel van den Burg Below: Royal Victoria Docks London, Photo: www.londonroyaldocks.com
The Victoria Docks took IJburg as an example, but the Dutch have many more. For instance the amphibious homes in Maasbommel, the floating houses in Terwijde and the floating pavilion in
LEARNING FROM PLEČNIK Rivers have always been an important element in city planning. Over the last 100 years an increase in planning around rivers and bodies of water has become part of the design profession. In the 19th century, water was often seen as an industrial, infrastructural element. Nowadays, the rivers have become important and much praised urban elements. The Slovenian architect Jože Plečnik studied the value of a river as an urban element. Before his designs for the city of Ljubljana in the 1920s and 30s, water design was, in line with the park movement, mainly related to landscape and park design. Nevertheless, a strong relation between water and the urban context was rarely found.
The city of Ljubljana (Slovenia) has been largely influenced by Plečnik. His goal was not to dictate the architecture and the style of the city, but to create elements throughout the city which share the stories of its inhabitants. The river Ljubljanica was a central connection in these stories. Plečnik improved the connection to the water in the city by adding different levels across the river and he incorporated the daily life of the inhabitants by connecting important urban nodes to the river. One of these nodes along the river is the Tromostovje bridge. This bridge, which actually consists of three separate bridges, became a central meeting place of the city. The three bridges often form the stage of city events and can be used for commercial activities. Plečnik did not merge the bridges, but consciously left gaps in between them to strengthen the relation to the water. By making places along the river which had an important value in the story of many inhabitants Plečnik was able to not only connect the river to the city, but to also connect the personal lives of the inhabitants of Ljubljana to the river Ljubljanica.
Similar developments can be seen in a large amount of cities over the past century. One of these cities was Copenhagen. The city of Copenhagen plays an important role in worldwide shipping. The port areas, close to the city center, were closed off as ships became too large to enter this area of the port. In 1993, and later in 2009, the municipality of Copenhagen published their plans for the city. An important element of this was the dismantling of the Inderhavnen and the Sydhavnen and the stimulation of pedestrian and cyclist movement in these areas. The industrial areas surrounding the ports were opened up to the public.
“That is what I do, I mark the points on my route, I make connections visible, but I do not unveil the mask entirely […] I tie them together to form a story, more stories, uncountable stories.” (K. Havik from the perspective of Jože Plečnik)
The redevelopment consisted of key projects along the river. Public buildings, well designed public spaces, a combination of green and industrial styles and an improved connection to the water are all part of these developments. Today, the port area of Copenhagen has become a daily destination for the inhabitants and are full of business and leisure activities. The river is an important element in connecting these places and buildings, visually and mentally. It eventually connects the recently developed Orestad area to the city center of Copenhagen. Rivers can also be used as a central pivot in a large development project of an area. In the London 2012 Olympic park, the river Lae and its canals have had a large influence on the development of the area. year 22, number 53 - November 2016
Before the first development of the area, the Lae wetlands were a large industrial area of the city. There were high amounts of pollution and there was barely any wildlife in the river. The Olympic games offered the opportunity to slowly improve the situation. During the games, the river connected the different Olympic venues in the park. These days even more developments influence the former Olympic park. During the preparations for the Olympics the developers were able to remove the toxins and remains of the industrial area from the Lae river valley. This development is shown by studies of the department of Geology of the University of London. Although the area was suitable for the Olympic games, it was not yet useable for habitation.
Sources - Havik, K. (2010). The Architect and the City : A Double Oeuvre Jože Plečnik in Ljubljana. OASE, 89, 54–63. - Anton, M., Garrett, B. L., Hess, A., Miles, E., Anton, M., Garrett, B. L. (2016). London’s Olympic waterscape : capturing transition. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 7258(August), 125–138. - Municipality of Copenhagen (Denmark). (1993). Copenhagen municipal plan, 1993. Copenhagen: The Municipal Corp.
Pictures Top to bottom: - The Ljubljanica River. Photo: J.Q.C. Gijsbertsen, 2016 - Three bridges over the river. Photo: Chris & Paige travels - Havnebadet, Copenhagen. One of the redevelopment projects. Photo: FRA, 2004 - Map of the Legacy Londen Project by Allies and Morrison
Now, more than 10 years after the start of the development, the area is suitable for its new purpose, a combination of educational venues, domestic buildings and the sport venues which remained. The river valley has been transformed into a green environment which the inhabitants can use for leisure after the developments and the master plan have been realized. One of the main values of a river is that it is a connecting element. It creates visual links which one would not be able to establish in the normal urban fabric. A river is an opportunity as much as it is a barrier. By using these properties in their natural and most valuable way, urban design has the possibility to strengthen the relation of a city, and most importantly its inhabitants, to the river. Bram Nuijten
GRADUATION PROJECT WATER WAYS
Water is one of the primary conditions for life and has always been an important driver of change for urban development. Today, we use water for industrial processes, land irrigation and recreational purposes. Additionally, in many situations water also adds quality to space. Clean water is not only a necessity for these functions, it is also a precious good. Therefore, new research on how we carefully handle our water sources in a sustainable and strategic way is increasingly important. The assignment The aim for this project was to formulate a spatial strategy for an integral and sustainable water system in the area of the river Aa, located in the southeast region of Noord-Brabant (the Netherlands). There are two reasons why this location is of specific interest in the light of water management. First, a declining groundwater level and a limited supply of fresh water via rivers and canals are a threat for this region, due to climate change and groundwater retraction. Moreover, large quantities of water are
discharged by the river Aa during wet periods. To maintain water in this region, multiple goals and measures have been determined by the national government and regional water boards (in Dutch: de waterschappen) that enhances a sustainable water system.1,2 Second, the river Aa used to play an essential role in the transportation of goods, as an energy source and supplier of water for agricultural purposes, and as a spatial element for the protection of prestigious buildings3,4. Many of these functions have disappeared. Although it has lost many of its functions, the river can be a starting point to enhance a sustainable water system and for new spatial interventions. The strategy The strategy focuses on developing multiple parallel waterways. These waterways are connected to the river Aa, and direct water from the river to new local water storage locations which are scattered over the region: decentralization of water storage locations. At these locations, water can slowly infiltrate in the ground
to replenish the groundwater source(s) as a first step to create local and sustainable water cycles. This way water remains within the region and can be (re)used for different purposes. A new program for these locations should enhance meaningful, attractive and functional spaces. In addition, water should be more visible in the landscape to increase the awareness of the importance of water. Case study: Parallel Waterway Veghel The strategy is applied as a case study in the south of Veghel. This area is already pointed out as a retention area by the water board and is in transition from a production landscape towards a rural living landscape. A new parallel waterway forms a backbone for the area that directs water to new water storage locations and stimulates new spatial interventions. The parallel waterway, combined with a new attractive recreational route for slow traffic, connects the city with the productive rural landscape and improves its accessibility. Furthermore, the line follows the
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existing infrastructure to preserve the historical landscape patterns. The waterway flows through an area that can be divided into three different zones with their own identity: the rural landscape, the peripheral zone, and the urban environment. Each of these zones has its own program, linked to new water storage locations. Locations in the rural landscape focus on a functional production and consumer landscape with space for nature development. Water storage locations can turn into fish farms, and water can be used for land irrigation or as drinking water for livestock. The peripheral zone has potential qualities of becoming a recreational living landscape. For example, an artificial lake is suited for swimming or ice skating, and along the edges a restaurant or houses can be developed. Water storage locations in the urban environment provide water for small scale (daily) urban activities, like washing the car or irrigating the garden. In addition, water enhances spatial interventions for leisure or educational purposes.
Sources: -Detares. (2012). Zoetwatervoorziening in Nederland, aangescherpte landelijke knelpuntanalyse in de 21ste eeuw. Delft: Deltares -Water Aa en Maas. (2015). Waterbeheersplan 2016-2021. ‘s-Hertogenbosch -Werkgroep ‘Oud Erp’. (1975). Erp in oude ansichtkaarten. Zaltbommel: Europese Bibliotheek -Adema, J. v. (2011). Het Havelt, wel en wee van een Veghels buurtschap. Veghel -Bron2 Pictures: Left: Impression fishpond Right: Sketch parallel water way
INTERVIEW WEST8 MIAMI BEACH SOUNDSCAPE - PERRY MAAS Perry Maas graduated in 2003 at the Design Academy Eindhoven. Before he started to work at West8 in 2005, he gained experience as an industrial and public space designer at various design and architectural firms in both the Netherlands as Spain. Today, Perry Maas is a Public Space Designer and Project Leader at West 8 urban design and landscape architecture b.v, where he coordinates the design and technical implementation process of various architectural project components in the Netherlands and abroad. He is a specialist in the field of designing outdoor furnishing elements as well as luminaire design. In the Miami Beach SoundScape project, also known as the Lincoln Park, he focused on the implementation of elements in the park design. We were fortunate to interview Perry Maas about this project and how he helped make it a new attractive and interactive city park. 1. What is soundscaping exactly and why is it important? Soundscaping is not an official term. We (ed. West8) call it Miami Soundscape, because it is a striking
name for this particular park design. It tells something about the experience and interaction with music and sound in the landscape, in this case the Lincoln Park. 2. With how many people did you work with on Miami Beach Soundscape? In total, somewhere around 16 people. It was a combination of designers at our office in Rotterdam and designers from our branch in New York. Our New York office was mainly responsible for the project management of this project, its technical development and they also kept an eye on the realization. That was a logical choice, due to their local presence and specific US regulations. As a designer working in America you stay being responsible for the final result, so you want the realization to exactly proceed as planned. 3. How does one create a properly functioning sound system in a park without walls? For example, is there noise pollution for local residents? To get high quality acoustics, we worked together with an external audio specialist from the United States, who
had been appointed especially responsible for acoustic results. The specialist showed us a schematic plan of a sound system with multiple options of separate speakers and cables. West8 integrated this in the park design as compactly as possible. We designed it in a way that it would not draw too much attention. The sound sources are positioned in such a way, that the soundquality in the ‘outdoor concert space’ is always at its best. The problem of noise pollution is not really relevant here, since the system is designed very accurately. There is only sound only where you want it to be heard. 4. The proportion of paved/unpaved road is relatively low for the requested plan of requirements, there is much green. What was the reason behind the relatively green park? First, the project was about an outdoor space, not necessarily a square. Second, the weather conditions in Miami can be extreme; tropical hurricanes and floods are no exception. In order to be able to drain rainwater, the grass surface is provided with a special drainage layer of sand which works as an ideal buffer to cope with extreme weather and minimizes the damage of possible flooding. 5. The park is identified as intimate, shadowy and soft. How is this intimacy and softness implemented in the park? By introducing a variety of elements with curved or rounded shapes. One example is the seating edges made of white selfcompacting concrete (SCC). For the concrete paths we added salt beads to the concrete during the manufacturing process. In this way the material comes to life after the concrete is hardened. This gives an aged and natural effect we are looking for. In addition, the Pergolas are designed as white structures that look like clouds and are covered with pink Bougainvillea. They provide color and shelter from the intensive sunlight in Florida. 6. How did you bring the landscape of the park with the surrounding
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buildings of, among others, Frank O. Gehry together? The park design was inspired by the concert hall “New World Center” - by Frank O. Gehry. However, it was not a guiding theme for the design. The park serves the concert hall, the huge screen on the front facade anables interaction between the events inside the building and the activities occurring outside. With a corresponding surround-sound and projection device, with which the concert hall is able to show live concerts in an outdoor environment on that screen. Moreover, we have taken necessary measures in the design to cope with the fierce weather conditions. This has resulted in anchoring the palm trees and pergolas with a special reinforcement at the base. Therefore, the palm trees (a resilient species) will not be easily pulled out of the ground during extreme weather to avoiding damage. 7. How did you come to the particular mosaic structure which we can see in the path design? The view of the acoustic ceiling of the New World Center was used as an inspiration. The intention of the track is not only to function as a path, but also to provide recreational spaces. These can especially be found at curves or intersections. In this way, visitors are encouraged to stay longer in the park. The undulation applied at retaining walls or angles influenced the mosaic path structure as well.
Subsequently these were welded together, which made it possible to make the flexible shape out of thin mass. 9. What effect does the park have on the city and its residents? It has become a popular meeting place for all people, no matter young or old, poor or rich; all are welcome. The concert hall features concerts from some of the best philharmonic orchestras in the world. There are also free movie nights sponsored by the City of Miami Beach that provide plenty of social interaction. There are regular outdoor music performances interacting with the live concert indoors. All these elements together inspire people to listen to classical music and make classical music more accessible to the general public. This design has had a big influence on the experience of local as well as foreign visitors. Which makes Miami Beach Soundscape a great example for enhancing the social interaction and the quality of life in a city center through urban design. Mark van Esdonk Catalien Peerdeman
8. What are the artificial pergolas at the entrances based on? Are they (constructively) measured with the help of digital programs or manually designed? They are based on the options made with the help of 3D modeling programs. According to the technical construction measurements, the best way to produce the pergolas was to combine round aluminum tubes.
A HOME AWAY FROM HOME Do you recall the percentage of submissions from the TU/e students to the competition “A Home away from Home” launched jointly, on January 18, 2016, by the Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers (COA) and Chief Government Architect? It was 3%! So youd be forgiven for thinking that the competition was just a small local call for ideas of little magnitude. But the truth is that the organizers received no less than 366 responses, combining two categories: the professional and the student one. It was not the first time that a similar appeal was made to the design community. In 2015, Juulia Kauste, the director of the Finnish museum of architecture, organized a competition called “Home, not Shelter”. But in these days where xenophobia, fear of the other and extreme polarization, dominate the news, the chief govt. architect, Floris Alkemade, and his team, demonstrated intelligence and courage. As, instead of focusing on the refugee category, they enlarged their “target groups” to people as diverse as young divorcees, young widows and widowers, new expatriates, Erasmus exchange students, PhD students or seasonal workers who face similar needs and suffer the same scarcity of housing offers. The participants could send a solution for one (or both) of the two categories: “transformation” and “new building”. The “Inside” approach would design the transformation of an existing vacant building. The “Outside” one would focus on the conception of new building(s) for a site, owned or managed by the COA. On June 29, 2016, six winners were announced. Currently they are working out their proposals into practical and implementable projects, and their solutions will be exhibited from October 22 to October 30, 2016, at the next Dutch Design Week. Six other teams received an honorable mention award. All the results can be seen on www.ahomeawayfromhome.nl. As an urban designer, my attention was drawn in particular to the Hotel “Nice to meet you” project. Its new exploitation strategy combines the programs of asylum seekers center with a hotel and redevelops three existing vacant buildings in Amsterdam, Dordrecht and Nijmegen. Their flexible interior layout offers an ideal solution to a more and more unpredictable and fluctuating housing demand, and a credible integrating potential with both the surrounding neighborhoods and the city. Although innovative and inspiring projects were conceived in the outside category, one could be concerned about their urban integration. Their implementation could end up creating camps.
The camps were the subject of the exhibition called “habiter le campement, which ran until August 29, 2016, at the “Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine”, in Paris. Its curators questioned the relation between the notion of “habitat”, which implies the idea of permanence and durability, and the one of the “camp”, which is supposed to be temporary. Actual political, economic and environmental contexts have forced millions of people to organize their survival in temporary camps, and forced them to “inhabit” their camps and turn them into “temporary” cities of thousands of inhabitants. The exhibition presented 45 examples of settlements for each of the six categories: the nomads, the travelers, the unfortunates, the exiles, the conquerors and the protesters. This impressive documentation performance still needs extended research to analyze degrees of freedom of settlement, the emergence of new typologies of innovative solutions, and above all, their suitable future improvements. To complete your knowledge upon the topic of camps, I recommend you the articles of the Flemish philosopher, Lieven de Cauter. The new Venice Biennale includes 63 national participations in the historic Pavilions at the Giardini, at the Arsenale and in the historic city center of Venice. In its central pavilion, the Italian pavilion of the Giardini, the exhibition “Reporting from the front” focuses on the new role of architecture and urbanism within urgent social matters, like the fugitive massive migrations. It presents the work of 88 participants from 37 different countries. Several national pavilions of this 15th International Architecture Exhibition (open until November 27, 2016 in Venice) for example, the Austrian and the German one, are presenting and discussing these same issues. All those initiatives illustrate the increasing influx of migrants for the field of architecture and urbanism, and show the challenges that come with it. Nowadays more than 65 million people - that’s almost the entire French population - are on the run worldwide, and more are to come. So whether you are studying to become an architect, a constructor, an urban planner, an urban designer or a real estate professional, every discipline will be required. Whether your approach will be at local, national or international level, here in the Netherlands or close to the conflict areas, does not matter. What matters is that the problems need to be tackled, as unfortunately, those problems will not vanish like smoke. So let’s stimulate the debates and the researches as your future clients might not be quite the ones you expected… Sophie Rousseau
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